The value associated with white skin and blond hair: In video, two little girls, one black and one white, pretend to be lost – See how people react

“Does help from people change according to the color of the child?”

Note from BW of Brazil: So, you still believe “somos todos iguais” (we are all equal)??? Are you sure about that? OK, first let’s be clear about this. Yes, human beings are all equal in simple terms of humanity. We all need food to eat, air to breathe and water to drink, but this is not what we’re talking about here. We are talking about the social values associated with physical characteristics connected to understandings of race. We’ve seen numerous examples of the privilege that white skin, distinctly European features and (preferably) blond hair bring in a country like Brazil. This writer has personally witnessed numerous examples of this overwhelming acceptance of white superiority in various cities and states around the country and the experiment shown in the video featured today is just more proof of this.

While people continue to use rhetoric to deny the fact that the lives and characteristics of white Brazilians are clearly more valued than those of non-whites, we see proof to the contrary is so many ways that one has to wonder how long people can continue this charade. Anyway, in yet another installment of those ever popular “Vai Fazer o Quê?” (What Would/Will You Do?) videos, we see the differences in how people react or don’t react when two little girls appear to be lost. The results are, again, very revealing about the construction of race in Brazilian society. See the full video at the bottom of the page. 

Racial prejudice affects even people with the same skin color. Do you doubt this? Do an honest test with yourself!

by Elane Souza Advocacia & Consultoria

Black child stays 'lost' for an hour without help from anyone'
Black child stays ‘lost’ for an hour without help from anyone’

There is a program on Record TV named Hoje em Dia that presents an interesting column. It consists of assessing people’s reactions to a particular type of treatment that is meted out to someone. Yesterday, perusing on the station’s portal, as I do almost every day, since I don’t watch TV, I saw this description in a title that interested me quite a bit. “Elcio Coronato tests the reaction of people in a situation of racial prejudice”…curiously, I decided to open the video to see the result of such a test.

Two little girls were placed in a point in the city of São Paulo, with normal cloths, garments, pretending to be lost (from their parents), however one was black and one white, each one in their own time, were observed with cameras and instructed with headsets in their ears.

After an hour, a man stops and asks the girl, 'Where is your mother?"
After an hour, a man stops and asks the girl, ‘Where is your mother?”

First, the “experiment” with the black child, leaving her in the street with a look of being lost. The girl remained for 1 hour until a young man, also black, took the initiative to approach and ask where her parents were, what was happening, and if she was lost (i.e. an hour for someone to care about the welfare of that child); however when the same “experiment” was done with the white girl, blonde with light-colored eyes, in less than five minutes someone appeared (a lady with her little girl, also white) worrying about her.

Several tests with the blonde girl were necessary, every time she was put there, “as lost”, immediately two or more people appeared to take knowledge of what the girl was doing there alone (if she was lost, where her parents were and blah blah blah).

Numerous people stopped to help the blond-haired white child
Numerous people stopped to help the blond-haired white child

It’s unbelievable how prejudiced treatments are visible. It seems that people see as something common seeing black children on the street, but when they see a little blond white girl they are immediately concerned and “run” to help. (1)

Have you ever imagined in this situation? What do you do if you found a black child in the street? Would you distance yourself because of fear of being assaulted because if they are on the street it’s because they are marginals and drug addicts? Or would you act differently, seeking to know what was going on, if she was lost, if she needed something, if she had a home and a family?

Unfortunately, it’s damn PRÉ-conceito (PRE-concept or prejudice) that is ingrained in many of us, including us who have the same color pardos (ie browns) and negros (blacks).

Within minutes and throughout the recording numerous people stopped to offer help to the blond child
Within minutes and throughout the recording numerous people stopped to offer help to the blond child

It’s a shame the way we behave in situations like this! We cannot let this world change us into inhumane people. We cannot get used to see such situations and then believing they are common or natural. Or does the mere fact that a person is white already give a stamp of good conduct, being better and more worthy than others?

Black girl and white girl lost; is there a difference in how people react?

Source: Jus Brasil


1. What’s really noteworthy here is not only how quickly people come to the aid of the blond child who they believe to be lost, but also the number of people. The black girl waits about an hour before a single person offers his help. On the other hand, people coming to the aid of the blond white child come in groups of two, three, five and even ten people. And just for clarity, we are aware that some will look at the non-white child and say, “she’s not negra/black; she’s mulata/parda/brown/mixed”, but does it really matter? As we have argued in numerous posts, according to many social statistics, persons of African descent, be they preto/black or pardo/brown experience social disadvantages almost completely equal. Studies proved this in the 1950s and still today, 60 years later, pretos and pardos remain in the same social “boat”.

About Marques Travae 3747 Articles
Marques Travae. For more on the creator and editor of BLACK WOMEN OF BRAZIL, see the interview here.


  1. It’s no secret that that Brown and Black children are those who are most often poor or homeless (thus, seeing them alone in the street is not uncommon). This phenomenon is practically nonexistent among white kids where I live in Brazil. In Brazil, Black and Brown people are members of a somewhat permanent underclass and are largely invisible to white people. I would love to have seen this same social project carried out in a lower class neighborhood. My guess is that, among other Black and Brown people, this Brown child would not have been ignored (and neither would the white child). In fact, in the video, we can see that it is a Black man who helps this Black child, since she is not invisible to him. But all of this is neither here nor there….

    Eventually, we as Black people will need to stop spending so much of our energy trying to get white people to understand us or care deeply about who we are, as most of them do not have access to emotional depth or divinely connected spirituality – not unless they invade Black, Brown, Yellow, and Red communities to learn their secrets. We must accept that they have a blind spot and are generally defective in this way. Those who do not have this defect must be considered statistical outliers and should not be classified with “most white people.” On a positive note, I am happy that white people carried out this grotesque “experiment” to show other white people how hateful they are. But I can predict that most will not get the message on a deeper level – not deep enough for them to care.

    In accepting this defect in the majority of white people worldwide, we can then begin, in earnest, to live our lives free of what they might be thinking about us or how they might perceive us. Just assume that they do not give 2 fucks about you, and continue to live unfettered by their presence. Instead, each of us can decide to take care of our own when we see one who needs the care. In short, we do not need white empathy to move forward. Rather, more of us must reach the space of self empowerment and own whatever space we are in.

    • I couldn’t agree more! Too many Blacks are way too concerned about how Whites view them. Who cares! I’ve been in a position of authority lots of times (not in the workplace but in social environments) and I get asked for my opinions constantly.

      This position of power EARNED. It is not gifted too you. All these social experiments just show how flawed society is. But all that said, why is it that Brown and Black children are the most often homeless, poor and in the case of the US have the highest numbers in child services (IE: Foster Care)?

      On the surface it’s the concerned to be accepted fully in the White Community, but the dark secret we don’t give a F about our reproductive health especially in the US.

      The Dark Secret –

      Most Black children are born to poverty period, end of story.

      • Well, if you are talking about American Blacks, you would be incorrect, as most of our children are not “born into poverty, end of story”.

        Also, as a Black person who grew up around a bunch of white people, I always have to laugh my ass off at the the fantasy some of us create about who they are as a populace.

        The TRUE dark secret is that white people – when you look under their collective cover – are some of the most screwed up people on the planet! Its true that they own all the land, but I would challenge you to find me one rich white family that does not struggle with their kids being depressed, or on drugs, or having to disown someone from the family because of some minor embarrassment, or feeling impotent when they don’t get their way (thus, choosing to destroy lots of innocent people who have NOTHING to do with their personal issues), or who do not walk out of their houses each day without a generalized fear of “regular” and non-white people, or who do not have some pedophle preist/aunt/uncle/brother/sister/neighbor waiting to rape their kid at the earliest possible convenience. We act as if the white race is something OTHER than alcoholic colonizing rapist thieves who ALWAYS cheat to get ahead, and who ALWAYS cry like babies at the moment a non-white person with REAL talent moves into one of their percieved spaces. Sorry to burst ya’ll’s bubble about white people, but they are nothing to collectively aspire to! Instead, as I continuously state, we must learn to be unfettered by their opinions of us, and we must not allow them to knock us off our game all the time. We must accept that they are soulless assholes, until they prove otherwise!

        The thing about them is that 1) they tend to be better at hiding their skeletons, and 2) because they usually own media outlets, governments, and businesses, they will always be able to put a “positive” spin on those skeletons, should they come out of the closet, or bury them completely. It is why their terrotist mass shooters are simply seen as “crazy individuals”, why their rapist pedophile priests are sent to different parishes rather than brought to justice en masse, why the rich white people who continue to destroy Brazil through corruption and shady dealings are never TRULY brought to justice, and why they are always shooting themselves in the head or jumping off of buildings at the first sign of trouble!

        I wish there were more Black people who were not SO segregated from white people, simply because I want more of us to understand how TRULY screwed up they are as a race, and how we must stop constantly comparing ourselves to them, our seeing them with rose-tinted glasses.

  2. In the U.S., there’s a similar program on TV called What would you Do? Its great to see a similar episode and program on Brazilian TV. 🙂 As you can guess, the WWYD episodes featuring black and white or sometimes Hispanic people also have similar outcomes for the non white actors/actresses. Totally agree with the above commentators about African people no matter if its in the U.S. or Brazil and other parts of the African Diaspora looking out for and taking care of the kids no matter if they are lost or in need of help. After all the insults and complaints black men receive continuously, it was great to see a man concerned for the black girl and went out of his way to make sure she was in safe hands. I think the reason many people raced to help the blanquito in the episode was because white people often paint themselves as the universal human being with feelings and identity and as the omnipresence voice of humanity ignoring and downplaying the humanity, dignity and voices of African children and adults. As it was said above only African people can help themselves at the end of the day.

  3. ‘Eventually, we as Black people will need to stop spending so much of our energy trying to get white people to understand us or care deeply about who we are.

    Rather, more of us must reach the space of self empowerment and own whatever space we are in.’

    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

    • I agree what you said, most of us don’t want understand that white people don’t give a damn about black problems! Because they have created a world where only white people are considered pure and innocent!

      • Only nobody is trying to solve that problem and when people do step forward they are vilified.

        The issue is giving a F about Black Children, even if they aren’t YOURS.

  4. One of the most important things a Black person can do today is to DEEPLY internalize self love and to reject white supremacist rhetoric. Again, it is WELL KNOWN that the average white person historically has no space in his/her heart for us, and that we should quit asking them for their understanding. They are like retarded children in the realm of emotion, connectedness and empathy. We do not need to return their hatred. We just need to be clear that, as a group of “humans”, they are deeply flawed in this way and should, thus, be avoided unless they can demonstrate that they do not have this flaw. Here is an interesting discussion on the topic (the perspective is that of an American, but can apply to all of us):

    And here is a powerful debate between a known American racist tv personality and Khalid Muhammed before his death :

  5. ”Nao e porque e loirinha”, It aint because she’s a little blond, it’s because I also have a daughter and I thought it could help to mine too. Now, I know how it is in Brazil, but thats how it is! I believe back people should start’ to create’ our own stuff, schools, Companies etc..Like dr. Umar Jhonson said, nowadays he seems to crazy, but he was amazing.

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